A Madison County woman says she is now homeless after a woman tricked her into quit claiming one property and stole money that was supposed to be used toward a down payment at another property.

Carol Carter filed a lawsuit Oct. 14 in Madison County Circuit Court against Sandrea M. White doing business as Rehobeth Financial.

Carter claims she owned two properties – one at 2633 Madison Avenue in Granite City and another at 212 ½ Hill St. in Madison – when defendant White offered to provide Carter financial services on June 1, 2006.

After Carter accepted White's services, White advised Carter to move out of the Granite City property where she was living, according to the complaint. White offered to become property manager of that property, which Carter could rent out while she lived in a manufactured home that could be placed on her Madison property, the suit states.

Carter agreed to accept the proposition and on June 8, 2006, met with White at U.S. Bank where she believed she was signing tax documentation and papers that would confirm White's role as Carter's financial advisor. Little did Carter know that she was actually signing a quit claim form for her Granite City property, making White owner of the property, the complaint says.

On Aug. 1, 2006, before Carter discovered the truth about her Granite City property, White told Carter that she could use $1,500 for a down payment for a manufactured house. If Carter could come up with the money, White promised to provide the additional $1,000 needed for the down payment, Carter claims.

So, Carter borrowed $1,500 from her friend, who made the check payable to Rehobeth Financial, according to the complaint.

On Aug. 5, 2006, Carter and White traveled to the manufactured home center where White wrote a $2,500 check for down payment of the manufactured home.

In order for her home to be placed on her Madison property, Carter was forced to pay $250 for a special use permit, which she paid on Aug. 16, 2006, the suit states.

After the permit was approved on Aug. 18, 2006, Carter called the manufactured home center on Oct. 19, 2006, to let them now that it was okay to deliver the manufactured home to her property, the complaint says.

Only then did Carter discover that White had withdrawn the $2,500 down payment shortly after it was submitted. Therefore, Carter claims she no longer had access to the home.

Carter attempted to contact White about the matter and demanded the return of the $1,500, but White refused to discuss the case, according to the complaint.

So, Carter attempted to move back into her Granite City home only to learn that she had actually signed the quit claim deed and that she no longer owned the property, the suit states.

In the two-count suit, Carter is seeking a judgment of more than $25,500 and punitive damages of $76,500, plus interest, attorneys' fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Carter will be appearing pro se.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-1097.

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